The first day of school can be a little nerve-wracking for any student. But that is particularly true for the child who is new to a school. Questions race through students’ minds, such as … Where is my classroom? How do I open my locker? Will I make any friends? For this reason, SVC has employed two outstanding orientation programs for incoming students — WEB (Where Everyone Belongs) in Junior High and Link Crew in High School.
Student ambassadors are trained to mentor new and transitioning students. Prior to the beginning of the school year, the “Linkies” and “WEBies” attend a half-day orientation where their leaders “show them the ropes.” Ice-breakers, games and team-building activities are interwoven with informational talks and campus tours.
The relationship-building continues throughout the school year. Link and WEB leaders maintain contact with their students in a variety of ways — from leaving encouraging notes to hosting group lunches to organizing activities during break time. They also make themselves available to their students when they just want someone to talk to.
Since the program’s inception in 2010, well over one thousand students have benefiting from the mentorship and relation-building aspects of the WEB and Link programs. One new High School student summed it up well in this sentiment she shared with her Link Leader: “You were a person I looked up to because you worked hard and it made me want to work harder. You were always someone I could have a conversation with.”
But it’s not just the new students who benefit from these programs — the student-leaders are equally blessed. “Being a Link Crew leader has made me realize that just being friendly to someone can make a huge difference in their life,” said Micah Munck. “Link Crew is a way to share God’s grace and love with others.”